Saturday 20th July 2018, 2.00pm to 4.00pm, Maxine Wade Demonstration: Pen, Ink & Watercolour

It was quite a full house for winter. Lots of puffer coats, some full length, parkas, long boots, scarves. Tony Northover introduced Maxine with her own words about her love of watercolour and its extensions to pen and ink. She is a lively personality. Her by-the-way comments were lively and amusing. Her confidence comes from being a secondary school teacher in art for a serious number of years. That gives you the confidence to speak in front of a crowd like nothing else does.

She gave a brief tutorial on the basics of perspective, vanishing points, large figures in the foreground, smaller behind, sharper focus in the foreground, out of focus behind. Colours in the foreground are warm, fading to blues as you go back. Interior perspective is important. You should try drawing your own room. To get the feel of perspective you can trace over photos.

Then she advocated the use of inks. Quink, black in particular. It is water soluble, very flexible, very useful. However it is a stain and you cannot lift it off. It does spread into a wash when you wet it; the more ink you put on the more responsive the wash. You can use a brush or a nib pen. With various nibs you get thicker or thinner lines. Don’t use a ruler. Start at the skyline and draw down. When the ink is dry a small wet brush will draw the shade out of the ink. The lines don’t disappear. Use a bigger brush for larger areas. Black Quink washes out into various surprising colours. You can dilute the Quink in a palette. It won’t bleed twice. If you want more colour apply more ink. You can incorporate watercolour tint into it.

The second part of the demo was of a baroque Venetian balcony and door with architectural detail, “The Green Door”, in watercolour. She had the drawing done to save time.

It was on Canson smooth paper which is good for lifting off. The initial washes ran down; she let them blend. Don’t worry, it doesn’t have to be perfect. The accidental effects are the magic of watercolour.

A pause for afternoon tea allowed the paint to dry. So, on a lightish dry ground, she was able to get more darks and detail. She used Inktense w/c pencils, wetting it as required. Very good for brickwork. Time was up on an information packed demo. A bit of work at home produced this finished work.

Well done Maxine.

Colin Browne

Maxine is taking another European trip next year.


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